AM: One easy mile just loosening up for the 15k today. The 10 am start time is the best thing about the SLTC Winter Series races. Weather looks perfect for the race but then with several days of winter weather moving in. Maybe 2 ft. of snow in the mountains!
Not sure what to think of this one but I'm trying to find the positive. Went in with some pretty high expectations of being able to hold a sub 6 pace the whole way. This I managed for 3 miles before reeling off six straight miles in the 6:15 range. My legs just didn't have the pop I expected. Maybe the 20 miler I did six days ago was too close? Maybe I'm just rushing things in my mind a little too fast?
On the positive side, at about mile three I thought I might completely blow up and end up jogging it in at 7 to 8 minute pace but I managed to keep it together. It was helped by the fact that I was running just a little behind Bill Cobler (who's really running well) and a little bit ahead of Dennis Simonaitis (whom I've NEVER beat). So I was in the thick of the GRAND MASTERS competition! I found myself hoping Bill would roll an ankle or something. Never did catch Bill but I managed to stay ahead of Dennis which was good for my self esteem.
On the down side, it was my slowest ever SLTC 15K by quite a bit and over a minute slower than last years time. But I'm feeling pretty healthy and strong and I'm confident that I can close the gap between me and my younger self.
I started my cool down jog with Fritz and crew but their pace was a little (lot!) too fast for me so I turned around after a mile. Fortunately I bumped into Dennis and Michelle doing their cool down at about 10 minute pace. More my speed! So I joined them for a couple more miles and had a great conversation. They're just a couple of smart, thoughtful people and I really enjoyed getting Dennis's perspective on some things running related, AGING related, and life related. The bottom line is that Dennis has had much more success as a masters runner that I have, or anyone else in America for that matter, and he still isn't afraid or too proud to come out and race even when his training isn't going well. I learned something from that.
Update... A little over 3 hours after finishing, I'm still pretty wiped out.
PM: 3 mile walk with Andy. Stopped at a Maverick for an ice cream sandwich even though it was 30 degrees and snowing.